Despite the Premier League season being just six games old, the Liverpool transfer rumours continue, including Napoli man Gonzalo Higuain.
According to the Daily Express, who cite Spanish football publication Fichajes, Liverpool have set their sights on Napoli target man Gonzalo Higuain, in order to bolster their strike force further.
The Reds were linked with the Argentine throughout the summer, prior to Mario Balotelli’s £16 million transfer to Anfield, and Higuain seems set to become the go-to Liverpool transfer link once more this season.
Jamie Anderson writes that “Brendan Rodgers is keen on bolstering his strike-force with a proven world class forward capable of emulating Luis Suarez,” inventing a £31.2 million transfer fee.
Rafa Benitez’s Napoli crashed out of the Champions League Qualifying Stages with a loss to Athletic Bilbao, and “could be forced to sell to recoup their economic shortcomings.”
Higuain remains the Partenopei’s prized asset, with 17 goals and seven assists in 32 Serie A appearances last season, and as such would demand an exorbitant fee.
Signing Higuain so soon after the arrival of Balotelli would represent a bizarre move, and as such is highly unlikely.
That Liverpool are once more being linked with a “world class” centre-forward, this serves to only compound the immense pressure on Balotelli, particularly in the absence of Daniel Sturridge through injury.
A total of 10 shots attempted without a goal in the recent Merseyside Derby underlines Balotelli’s endeavour in front of goal, and pressure will continue in the coming weeks.
Also linked with a move from the Serie A side to Anfield, and once more by the Daily Express, is Napoli playmaker Marek Hamsik.
Again citing Fichajes, the publication claims that Rodgers is looking to add to his midfield ranks, and is looking to thwart the interests of Chelsea and Manchester United in the Slovakian star.
The 27-year-old scored seven goals and made a further five assists in 28 Serie A appearances last season, and boasts considerable European pedigree.
Alex Harris writes that Napoli’s Champions League failure could see Rodgers capitalise on Hamsik’s precarious position “to improve the quality of his squad.”
However, the Express continues to quote Hamsik as saying “It is possible that I can stay at Napoli for my entire career, I am happy here but in football you never know.”
‘You never know.’ Modern football reporting’s equivalent of a ‘come and get me’ plea.
Having added Lazar Markovic and Adam Lallana to his attacking midfield roster already this summer, a January move for Hamsik would continue to flood the Reds’ squad, and as such a move is once more unlikely.
To complete a trio of Daily Express reports, the publication claims that Rodgers is interested in signing Benfica forward Eduardo Salvio in January.
Citing Portuguese newspaper A Bola, the Express claims Liverpool are set to battle again with United, along with AC Milan, Hamburg, Monaco and Valladolid, for the 24-year-old attacking player.
Salvio move to Benfica last summer after a successful loan spell with the Portuguese outfit, and has scored 16 goals in 66 appearances for the club.
Linked with Arsenal, Manchester City and Spurs in the summer, Salvio’s agent claimed “After a big season it is normal that significant clubs will be interested. Now the decision is in the hands of Benfica.
“Salvio is content at the club but he is open to the possibility of a move.”
The forward is typically deployed on the right-hand side of the attacking line, and would bolster the Reds’ ranks significantly.
Finally, perennially agent-flaunted French striker Andre-Pierre Gignac has linked with a move to Liverpool this January by the Daily Mirror.
The bulky centre-forward would provide an inexpensive back-up option to current Reds strikers Balotelli and Sturridge, with Gignac’s contract with current club Marseille set to expire this summer.
The 28-year-old has so far scored eight goals in eight Ligue 1 appearances this season, continuing a fine run of form with the French side.
The striker’s agent is quoted as claiming “This is a striker with a relatively atypical profile, responsive to the physical challenge, the archetypal player who can succeed in a big club. He can play in England, Arsenal or Liverpool, no problem.
“For me, [his real value] is between 12 and 15 million Euros.”
It is likely that, if any interest is concrete, Rodgers would sooner wait until the No. 9 is available on a free transfer this summer.
However, with Gignac continually linked with a move to Newcastle and Arsenal, and nothing to show for it, there remains a doubt as to the credibility of this rumour.
Which, if any, of these latest transfer rumours would benefit Liverpool most this January? Let us know in the comments below.